A Day in the Life of Current Archaeology

We love office birthdays (and biscuits!)

We love office birthdays (and we love biscuits even more!)

Hello, and welcome to Lamb House, a converted brewery building that lies a stone’s throw from the Thames in Chiswick, West London – home to Current Archaeology magazine, as well as our sister publications, Current World Archaeology, and Military History Monthly.

Today we’ve very much got that Friday feeling – possibly not helped by there still being vast amounts of cake in the office, from two team birthdays yesterday! – but as ever, there’s still lots to do. CWA went to press yesterday and their editorial team are just kicking off things for #67, while MHM is planning a big event for October.

Postcards from Team travels - and our office cooking rota

Postcards from Team travels – and our office cooking rota

Our Editor in Chief, Andrew Selkirk, has also dropped by for a visit – for the last few weeks he has been travelling all over the world, visiting fabulous archaeological sites (and gathering fabulous archaeological stories!) in Greece and China, which no doubt he will be keen to turn into articles soon. Right now he’s sitting with our design team, looking through holiday snaps (we mean site photos!).

Over at CA, we’re comfortably mid-cycle (click here to see what’s in out latest issue!), working towards the print deadline for issue 294. That means that much of the magazine has already been laid out, but there’s still news, book reviews, and a few odds and ends to polish off. Just as well we like to be busy…

We sent PDFs of most of our features back to their authors last week, so this has mainly been a day of making any final tweaks they might ask for – to make sure the articles are as accurate as possible, and that everyone’s happy with how they look – as well as hunting for some extra pictures, chasing up a few news stories, and finalising plans for a site visit next week – there’s nothing we like more than coming to see excavations.

Office mascot (knitted by one of our super-talented readers)

Office mascot (knitted by one of our super-talented readers)

Today also saw us putting the finishing touches to the text of the last feature yet to be completed – it’s an exciting one, and a bit of a CA exclusive, so we’re really looking forward to sharing it with you in a few weeks’ time – watch this space!

Wishing you all the best for the rest of the Day of Archaeology – and have a great weekend,

Carly Hilts
Assistant Editor, Current Archaeology

Media Archaeology: a day in the life of Current Publishing

Hello and welcome to Current Publishing, home of Current Archaeology, Current World Archaeology, and Military History Monthly. My name’s Carly – I’m the Assistant Editor of CA and CWA, and I’ll be your guide today.

The Styreni - a fierce tribe who guard our office.

The Styreni – a fierce tribe who guard our office.

Right now we’re in between magazine cycles – our sister magazine MHM went to press yesterday, and CA will be the next to go, in mid-August. That means things are relatively quiet, but there’s still lots to get ready for the next issue.

On the CA side of things, our Editor Matt is busy getting our next set of features ready to send back to contributors. We’ve got some super stories in store for you – really looking forward to sharing them with you once CA 283 is in print! Meanwhile I’ve been setting up some news stories and keeping regular content ticking over.

Back issues of CWA, which we've been going through in the run-up to our 10th anniversary issue.

Back issues of CWA, which we’ve been going through in the run-up to our 10th anniversary issue.

It might be a little while before the next CWA goes to the printers, but things are really buzzing on the international side of the office, as we’re working towards our 10th anniversary issue. Lots of exciting ideas bouncing around at the moment – particularly to do with the cover – I can’t wait to see how it shapes up over the next few weeks. Speaking of exciting, the latest issue of CWA has just come out in the shops – we’re really pleased with how it looks, and we hope you enjoy it too.

Normally Friday is Treats Day, but alas, this week our advertising guru Mike, who normally brings the yummy things, is on holiday – but never fear, our lovely intern Polly, who’s helping out with editorial, has gallantly stepped into the breach, surprising us with some super sweeties. Talk about making a good impression! We love having extra hands on deck – it’s wonderful to have the help, and such fun sharing our love of the past with people who are equally keen.

Friday cocktails - photo by Polly

Friday cocktails – photo by Polly

Friday fun doesn’t stop there, though – 5pm is cocktail o’clock, with today’s concoction mixed by Grace from advertising. It’s part apple, part strawberry, part gin, and entirely delicious.

Most of our days have themes – on Tuesday we take it in turns to cook lunch for the team – it tends to be something easy to make in bulk, so we started with chillis and now people are getting creative with curries. There’s only one person left on the rota, though, so we’ll need another theme soon. Thursdays tend to see the more energetic members of the team sloping off to play tennis at lunchtime, and today a bold few went for a run/bootcamp beside the river.

This desk is an ancient monument (or at least you have to excavate it if you need to find something!)

This desk is an ancient monument (or at least you have to excavate it if you need to find something!)

We hope you’ve had a good Day of Archaeology – here in Chiswick CWA has been tweeting ‘mystery artefacts’ that we dug up while going through back issues in preparation for the anniversary issue, while CA readers have been naming their favourite heritage landmarks in Britain. Wishing you more fun and games over the weekend!

Find out more – you can find Current Archaeology on Facebook here, or follow us on Twitter at @currentarchaeo.

Current World Archaeology’s Facebook page is here, and we tweet as @worldarchaeo. 



Behind the scenes at Current Publishing

Hello from Chiswick in West London, where the sun has finally come out and it’s all systems go in the Current Publishing office.

My name’s Carly – I’m the Editorial Assistant for Current Archaeology and Current World Archaeology, and as it’s the Day of Archaeology today I thought I’d take you behind the scenes to see how the magazines are put together.

Friday is treats day at Current Publishing, and today the morning got off to a very promising start with advertising maestro Mike earning literal brownie points by bringing in some baked goodies for us to share. We’re always excited when cake arrives in the office, and with one team birthday yesterday and two more imminent, there’s a lot of it about.

Right now we’re slap-bang in the middle of the press cycle. Our sister magazine Military History Monthly was sent to the printers yesterday, so today the full might of the design team has switched over to CWA, which is the next to go (in July).

Designer Justine is currently working her magic on the culture section, making our museum and book reviews look fabulous, while Art Editor Mark is experimenting with options for the next cover. At the moment we have 10 separate designs stuck up on the wall, which certainly brightens things up a bit!

CWA Editor Caitlin is putting the finishing touches to the last couple of features that are going into the next issue (#54), giving them a last polish before they are signed off as ‘ready to lay out’, while CA Editor Matt is out in the field, visiting an excavation at Oakington in Cambridgeshire where some seriously spectacular Anglo-Saxon burials are being uncovered. We covered the site in CA 261, and it’s fantastic to see that there are more stories to reveal. Watch this space for more information in CA 270!

Meanwhile, our boss Rob is tinkering with the ‘Flatplan’, doing clever things to the system we use to plan the layout of each issue, track the progress of articles and generally organise our lives, and our intern Roseanna is lending a hand with the news section, hunting for breaking stories all over the world. We’re always grateful for another pair of hands in the office, and it’s such fun sharing what media archaeology is all about with people who are as passionate about the past as we are.

This is the great thing about working at Current Publishing – we’re a small team but everyone has a unique and important role to play, and every day is different. Although I work for both magazines, because of where we’re at in the schedule I’ve been mostly focussing on CWA today. It’s great fun jumping between UK and international stories.

This morning I finished a two-page article about a site in Peru and wrote a fact box about Phrygians for a feature on Turkey, while this afternoon I’ve been sourcing pictures and turning around a breaking news story about World Heritage Sites for the CWA website.

Much like digging, you never know quite what each day is going to bring – but that’s what makes it so exciting.

Find out more – you can find Current Archaeology on Facebook here, or follow us on Twitter at @currentarchaeo.

Current World Archaeology’s Facebook page is here, and we tweet as @worldarchaeo.